It’s unsurprising that several health problems are associated with weight gain, especially those concerning cardiovascular health. That’s why the overall increasing weight has become a great concern. Research from Brigham Young University on the obesity epidemic in the United States has found that this problem is getting worse, with more than a third of American adults gaining 10% or more body weight over a 10-year period. At present, about 42.4% of US adults are obese. With women gaining 12 pounds (5.4 kg) and men gaining six pounds (2.7 kg) on average, more people are on the path to obesity and further health problems.
While our current technology is limited, these can still be a tool that motivates people to achieve weight loss and a healthier lifestyle. These devices are also growingly accessible to many, making them a viable option to help with losing weight. Here are some ways that technology can help in your fitness journey and combat obesity:
Gain access to online resources
One of the best ways to start losing weight is to consult online resources. With the advent of the internet, much information is accessible through your mobile phone or computer. There are several websites, videos, and infographics that provide tips and tricks on how to lose weight effectively. However, with its ease of usage, it can be easy to fall for misleading or fake material. Make sure you are consulting reliable sources of information, such as government websites or known clinics, to ensure you are safely losing weight without sacrificing your health.
Monitor your progress with apps
With the rise of smart tracking, phones are continually upgraded with medical sensors to record health-related data such as movement and sleep. These mechanisms inform apps, which can be effective tools for people of all ages, genders, and abilities to lose weight in a healthy way. Case in point, WeightWatchers’ weight loss plan for men involves a comprehensive app that allows users to track their weight, food, and activity to monitor their progress. In addition, this application provides a custom list of foods you don’t have to track or measure, making it easier to make healthier choices without starving yourself. You can supplement your app tracking by using a smartwatch, many of which are capable of tracking physical activity and heart rate, which further measures calories you burn. Through these, you can get an overall picture of your weight loss progress and see how you can continue to improve yourself.
Share your fitness journey and read about it online
Social media plays a huge role in growing technologies, allowing people to share and learn about others’ lives and goals. As weight loss is a common goal of many, having an online presence in these communities helps with keeping people motivated. A study published in the Journal of Services Marketing on online social support groups saw that these are particularly effective with weight loss services by providing a space to give and receive help in multiple ways:
- Informational – Get guidance or advice from others;
- Instrumental – Receive tangible aid in terms of resources, like equipment or even labor (eg. having an exercise buddy);
- Emotional – Provide encouragement and support; and
- Appraisal – Gain feedback or affirmation
Being able to read about others’ weight loss journeys can spur you to continue your own. If you’re too shy to ask for advice or help, you can always opt to use anonymous platforms like Reddit to learn from like-minded people.
Technology allows people to access a variety of resources, track their progress, and even keep them motivated to exercise. However, these are merely tools to help them in their fitness journey. As shared in our post called ‘Searching for New Weight Loss Tips?’, it’s still essential for you to set your own goals and consistently keep up with diet management and exercise. Losing weight takes effort, but even with slow but steady progress, you’re sure to make huge changes.